Operational Security (OPSEC) has always been an inseparable part of the cybercrime ecosystem, especially in the context of preventing law enforcement agencies from tracking down the activities of fraudulent and malicious adversaries online. Throughout the years, the industry has witnessed active utilization of malware-infected hosts (Socks4/Socks5) as anonymization ‘stepping stones’ and the use of cybercrime-friendly VPN providers, bypassing internationally accepted data retention regulations, as some of the primary anonymization tactics used by cybercriminals. Nowadays, this set of tactics has evolved into a diversified mix of legitimate and purely malicious infrastructure that provides value-added services such as APIs supporting Socks4/Socks5 services, DIY real-time […]
Posts Tagged: fraud
Regular readers of Webroot’s Threat Blog are familiar with our “A Peek Inside a Boutique Cybercrime-Friendly E-shop” series, originally started in 2012, highlighting the trend emerging at the time of boutique based E-shops selling access to compromised/hacked accounts. Popping up on our radars on systematic basis, this maturing market segment is already entering in a new life cycle stage in early 2014. The current stage is the direct result of the ongoing efficiency-oriented mentality applied by cybercriminals over the years in the face of the active implementation of tactics such as, for instance, templatization, ultimately leading to standardization of key […]
Operating in a world dominated by millions of malware-infected hosts acting as proxies for the facilitation of fraudulent and malicious activity, the Web’s most popular properties are constantly looking for ways to add additional layers of authentication to the account registration process of prospective users, in an attempt to undermine automatic account registration tactics. With CAPTCHA under automatic fire from newly emerging CAPTCHA solving/breaking services, re-positioning the concept from what was once the primary automatic account registration prevention mechanism, to just being a part of the ‘authentication mix’ these days, in recent years, a new (layered) authentication concept got the attention […]
It’s that time of the year! The moment when we reflect back on the cybercrime tactics, techniques and procedures (TTPs) that shaped 2013, in order to constructively speculate on what’s to come for 2014 in terms of fraudulent and malicious campaigns, orchestrated by opportunistic cybercriminal adversaries across the globe. Throughout 2013, we continued to observe and profile TTPs, which were crucial for the success, profitability and growth of the cybercrime ecosystem internationally, such as, for instance, widespread proliferation of the campaigns, professionalism and the implementation of basic business/economic/marketing concepts, improved QA (Quality Assurance), vertical integration in an attempt to occupy […]
WhatsApp users, watch what you click on! A currently circulating fraudulent spam campaign is brand-jacking WhatsApp in an attempt to trick its users into clicking on links found in the email. Once socially engineered users fall victim to the scam, they’re automatically exposed to a fraudulent pharmaceutical site, offering them pseudo bargain deals. Let’s assess the fraudulent campaign, and expose the fraudulent infrastructure supporting it.
We’ve recently spotted a multi-hop Russian cybercrime-friendly VPN service provider — ad featured not syndicated at a well known cybercrime-friendly community – that is relying on fake celebrity endorsement on its way to attract new customers, in this particular case, it’s pitching itself as being recommended by ex-NSA contractor Edward Snowden. How have anonymization tactics evolved over the last couple of years? Have the bad guys been ‘innovating’ on their way to cover the malicious/fraudulent online activity orchestrated by them? Let’d discuss some of the current trends in this ever-green market segment within the cybercrime ecosystem.
Thanks to the growing adoption of mobile banking, in combination with the utilization of mobile devices to conduct financial transactions, opportunistic cybercriminals are quickly capitalizing on this emerging market segment. Made evident by the release of Android/BlackBerry compatible mobile malware bots. This site is empowering potential cybercriminals with the necessary ‘know-how’ when it comes to ‘cashing out’ compromised accounts of E-banking victims who have opted-in to receive SMS notifications/phone verification, whenever a particular set of financial events take place on their bank accounts. A new commercially available Android, BlackBerry (work in progress) — supporting mobile malware bot is being pitched by […]
The perceived decline in the use of blackhat SEO (search engine optimization) tactics for delivering malicious/fraudulent content over the last couple of years, does not necessarily mean that cybercriminals have somehow abandoned the concept of abusing the world’s most popular search engines. The fact is, this tactic remains effective at reaching users who, on the majority of occasions, trust that that the search result links are malware/exploit free. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Cybercriminals continue introducing new tactics helping fraudulent adversaries to quickly build up and aggregate millions of legitimate visitors, to be later on exposed to online scams or directly […]
For years, cybercriminals have been abusing a rather popular, personally identifiable practice, namely, the activation of an online account for a particular service through SMS. Relying on the basic logic that a potential service user would not abuse its ToS (Terms of Service) for fraudulent or malicious purposes. Now that it associates a mobile with the account, the service continues ignoring the fact the SIM cards can be obtained by providing fake IDs, resulting in the increased probability for direct abuse of the service in a fraudulent/malicious fashion. What are cybercriminals up to in terms of anonymous SIM cards these days? Differentiating […]
Opportunistic 419 advance fee scammers are currently using CNN.com’s “Email This” feature to spamvertise Syrian Crysis themed emails, in an attempt to successfully bypass anti-spam filters. Ultimately tricking users into interacting with these fraudulent emails. The emails are just the tip of the iceberg in an ongoing attempt by multiple cybercrime gangs, looking to take advantage of the geopolitical situation (event-based social engineering attack) for fraudulent purposes, who continue spamming tens of thousands of emails impersonating internationally recognized agencies, on their way to socially engineer users into believing the legitimacy of these emails.